Four years after the Berlin IFF organisers left an empty chair on stage when house arrest prevented Jafar Panahi from attending as a jury member, the Iranian filmmaker picked up the Golden Bear for ‘Taxi’, his third feature in defiance of a 20 year filmmaking ban.
Toronto's opener has a potentially interesting twist on the court drama theme with a high powered lawyer returning home when his estranged father, the judge of the film’s title, became a murder suspect.
Susanne Bier and regular screenwriter, Anders Thomas Jensen, continue their collaboration with this realist drama where a hard drinking cynical detective confronts his demons after making a grim discovery during a junkie couple's domestic dispute.
Viggo Mortensen stars in David Oelhoffen’s adaptation of Albert Camus' 1957 short story, 'The Guest' (L'Hôte'), which depicts a school teacher's attempt to remain on the sidelines during the Algerian War after receiving unwanted responsibility for a prisoner.
Experienced Russian filmmaker, Andrei Konchalovsky, competes in the main competition for the first time after winning the special jury prize with 'House of Fools' during the last of his previous three appearances twelve years ago.
The third-generation Korean Chinese filmmaker, Zhang Lu, makes his first appearance at Locarno with the international premiere of 'Gyeongju', which received a South Korean theatrical release during June.
Syllas Tzoumerkas' second feature, 'A Blast', is the latest addition to the so-called Greek new-wave, which the filmmakers deny exists, but a similarity of subject and themes make comparisons inevitable.
Experimental filmmaker, Jeff Preiss, makes his feature debut with a biopic on the talented but largely unknown jazz musician, Joe Albany, who, unlike some of his contemporaries, could not progress a musical career alongside serious drug addiction.
Pascal Rabaté follows 'Holidays by the Sea', winner of best director at Karlovy Vary, with a comedy featuring a divorced father whose life changes dramatically after meeting a single mother and entering a popular TV competition show.
Loosely based on a true story, Rania Attieh's and Daniel Garcia's latest collaboration, 'Recommended By Enrique', features two strangers; a hopeful actress coming to terms with a no-show film director and an ageing cowboy whose associate has had to pack his bags in a hurry.
With both of Miller’s previous narrative films, ‘Capote’ and ‘Moneyball’ receiving best film Oscar nominations, he will be on the award season trail again with his latest, 'Foxcatcher', which marks his first appearance on the Croisette and departs from his previous same month Toronto launch/US release formula.
Mike Leigh takes a break from the filmmaker's stylised contemporary dramas - often mistaken for British realism - and returns to the 19th century costume drama of his popular 'Topsy-Turvy' with a JMW Turner biopic
If some films set almost impossible expectations for a filmmaker's follow up, then, surely, Michel Hazanavicius' spectacular one-off, 'The Artist', which so caught the public's imagination worldwide, must fall into this category.
A cause for celebration for some and a tiresome irrelevance to others, this is a new film from one of cinema's giants, a film provocateur par excellence - the real deal innovator - who has excited multiple contrary reactions over his fifty-year plus career.
Cannes favourite, David Cronenberg, makes his fifth appearance in the main competition with his Hollywood deconstruction satire, 'Maps to the Stras'; one of the festival's most keenly anticipated world premieres.
Nuri Bilge Ceylan returns to the same plateau lands of his last film, 'Once Upon a Time in Anatolia', with an intimate drama where a hotel owner and his sister both face separation from their partners.
Not for the first time, Berlin’s competition jury – this year led by Ang Lee producer, James Schamus – caught the pundits off guard, when awarding this year’s Golden Bear to Diao Yinan’s contemporary film noir, ‘Black Coal, Thin Ice’, which had slipped beneath the radar during the pre-ceremony hype.
The international jury led by Filipino filmmaker, Lav Dia (‘Norte, the End of History’, ‘Melancholia’), caused a surprise at this year’s Locarno Film Festival when it awarded the Golden Leopard to Albert Serra’s ‘Historia de la Meva Mort’ (‘Story of My Death’).
Michael Haneke has won the Palme d’Or for the second time in four years for the pre-ceremony favourite, Love (Amour), starring Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva as an elderly couple struggling to cope with the harsh reality of failing health.